The Obama administration proposed regulations Friday that would prohibit U.S. schools from selling unhealthy snacks.
The 160-page regulation from the Department of Agriculture (USDA) would enact nutrition standards for “competitive” foods not included in the official school meal.
In practice, the proposed rules would replace traditional potato chips with baked versions and candy with granola. Regular soda is out, though high-schoolers may have access to diet versions.
“Although nutrition standards for foods sold at school alone may not be a determining factor in children’s overall diets, they are critical to providing children with healthy food options throughout the entire school day,” the proposed rule states.
Again, I really have no problems with the First Lady of the United States making childhood obesity her signature issue. It is a widespread and serious problem, and more advocacy and awareness is far from a bad thing. The real problem comes in when big government decides that it is going to Accomplish Something, and their proposed solution is always — surprise! — more big government. Top-down, one-size-fits-all, bureaucratic regulations are rarely efficient, innovative, or creative problem solvers, and they all too often induce a whole host of negative-impact unintended consequences in the meantime.
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